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[cdn-nucl-l] Energy Firms Come to Terms With Climate Change
It looks like the earth is warming in the northern hemisphere, but I
understand it's cooling in the southern hemisphere. There is too much
politics in all this. It just doesn't feel like a scientific endeavour.
Nuclear energy should be part of the answer to this concern, but it does not
appear to be socially acceptable. Fear of exposure to any amount of
It seems people like windmills and solar, regardless of the cost or the
performance. The activists seem to be urging extreme reductions in energy
These are certainly interesting times.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Ruth Sponsler" <email@example.com>
To: <firstname.lastname@example.org>; "'Jerry Cuttler'" <email@example.com>;
"'ANS Member Exchange Listserv'" <firstname.lastname@example.org>; "'Canadian
Nuclear Discussion List'" <CDN-NUCL-L@mailman1.cis.McMaster.CA>
Sent: Sunday, November 26, 2006 3:52 PM
Subject: RE: [cdn-nucl-l] Energy Firms Come to Terms With Climate Change
>I think there is a strong consensus on climate change
> in the scientific community. This is not a "program"
> of liberal "environmentalist" scientists.
> A lot of people don't know that the late Dr. Alvin
> Weinberg was one of the key people behind the research
> that demonstrated the "Keeling Curve" of rising
> atmospheric CO2 levels.
> With NOAA and NASA posting data regularly about
> climate change, I think that anybody who calls
> themselves a supporter of nuclear energy, but who
> denies the occurrence of climate change probably
> supports fossil fuels more than nuclear energy.
> The need to control anthropogenic carbon emissions is
> the ace up the sleeve for nuclear energy. Nuclear
> energy offers a low-carbon source of reliable,
> abundant energy that is a lot more productive and
> reliable than renewable energy sources.
> Duke Energy, mentioned in the article, is considering
> submitting an application for a construction and
> operating license for a new nuclear power plant.
> Of course, the neo-luddites try to claim the climate
> change science as their own. They think people are
> willing to live like "Little House on the Prairie."
> These vocal, verbal neo-luddite type constituencies
> cause political problems - for example, where Al Gore
> claims he wants to do something about climate change
> but isn't very enthusiastic about nuclear energy [his
> father was a big supporter of Oak Ridge]. Al Gore
> needs to hear from more folks who support nuclear
> energy and believe that it is an effective tool to
> address carbon emissions problems.
> There have been quite a few climate-change related
> posts at the following blogs that share a general
> "theme" of supporting nuclear energy:
> A big part of the "concept" of blogs like these is
> education. The public needs to learn that the risks
> of low levels of radiation are much lower than are the
> risks of continued high rates of fossil fuel
> In summary, I think there is quite a bit of discussion
> about nuclear energy as a means to address climate
> change. I just wish it had happened twenty years
> --- Andy English <email@example.com> wrote:
>> Well, I'm sure that 98% of the scientists who don't
>> have their heads stuck
>> in the sand (and that includes the oil sands) would
>> agree. Yes, I know that
>> the whole earth cools and warms in cycles, but I
>> also know that it only
>> takes one straw to break the camel's back. And it's
>> not surprising to hear
>> that TXU would support a comprehensive, cost
>> effective, blah, blah, blah,
>> VOLUNTARY approach. Yeah, like that's going to
>> And why isn't the Canadian nuclear industry behind
>> all this? While there
>> may be some greenhouse gases emitted during the life
>> cycle of a nuke plant
>> (transportation, construction, etc.), its
>> contributions are insignificant.
>> But I guess it would be too much to hope for to have
>> the nukes out there, at
>> best doing something proactive, or at worst just
>> taking advantage of a
>> situation; it's just not our style. Thank God I'm
>> From: firstname.lastname@example.org.McMaster.CA
>> On Behalf Of Jerry
>> Sent: 26 November 2006 11:41 AM
>> To: ANS Member Exchange Listserv; Canadian Nuclear
>> Discussion List
>> Subject: [cdn-nucl-l] Energy Firms Come to Terms
>> With Climate Change
>> Do 98% of the scientists agree?
>> Energy Firms Come to Terms With Climate Change
>> By Steven Mufson and Juliet Eilperin
>> Washington Post Staff Writers
>> Saturday, November 25, 2006; A01
>> While the political debate over global warming
>> continues, top executives at
>> many of the nation's largest energy companies have
>> accepted the scientific
>> consensus about climate change and see federal
>> regulation to cut greenhouse
>> gas emissions as inevitable.
>> The Democratic takeover of Congress makes it more
>> likely that the federal
>> government will attempt to regulate emissions. The
>> companies have been
>> hiring new lobbyists who they hope can help fashion
>> a national approach that
>> would avert a patchwork of state plans now in the
>> works. They are also
>> working to change some company practices in
>> anticipation of the regulation.
>> "We have to deal with greenhouse gases," John
>> Hofmeister, president of Shell
>> Oil Co., said in a recent speech at the National
>> Press Club. "From Shell's
>> point of view, the debate is over. When 98 percent
>> of scientists agree, who
>> is Shell to say, 'Let's debate the science'?"
>> Hofmeister and other top energy company leaders,
>> such as Duke Energy Corp.'s
>> chief executive, James E. Rogers, back a proposal
>> that would cap greenhouse
>> gas emissions and allow firms to trade their quotas.
>> Paul M. Anderson, Duke Energy's chairman and a
>> member of the president's
>> Council of Advisors on Science and Technology,
>> favors a tax on emissions of
>> carbon dioxide, the most prevalent greenhouse gas.
>> His firm is the nation's
>> third-largest burner of coal.
>> Exxon Mobil Corp., the highest-profile corporate
>> skeptic about global
>> warming, said in September that it was considering
>> ending its funding of a
>> think tank that has sought to cast doubts on climate
>> change. And on Nov. 2,
>> the company announced that it will contribute more
>> than $1.25 million to a
>> European Union study on how to store carbon dioxide
>> in natural gas fields in
>> the Norwegian North Sea, Algeria and Germany.
>> These changes come as Democratic leaders prepare to
>> take over key committees
>> on Capitol Hill. Sen. Barbara Boxer
>> who calls global warming "the greatest challenge of
>> our generation," will
>> take the place of Sen. James M. Inhofe
>> (R-Okla.) as
>> chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works
>> Committee. Inhofe refers
>> to global warming as a "hoax."
>> Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.), the incoming Energy and
>> Natural Resources
>> Committee chairman, said he hopes to "do something
>> on global warming." Even
>> though the Bush administration's expected opposition
>> might make the
>> enactment of legislation unlikely in the next two
>> years, many companies
>> cannot put off decisions about what sort of power
>> plants to build.
>> Duke Energy, for example, has not added significant
>> power generation in two
>> decades, and customer demand is rising 1 to 2
>> percent a year. The company
>> has included a price for the carbon emitted in its
>> cost estimates for a new
>> coal-fired generating plant proposed for Indiana.
>> "If we had our druthers, we'd already have carbon
>> legislation passed," said
>> John L. Stowell, Duke Energy's vice president for
>> environmental policy. "Our
>> viewpoint is that it's going to happen. There's
>> scientific evidence of
>> climate change. We'd like to know what legislation
>> will be put together so
>> that, when we figure out how to increase our load,
>> we know exactly what to
>> One reason companies are turning to Congress is to
>> avert the multiplicity of
>> regulations being drafted by various state
>> governments. The Regional
>> Greenhouse Gas Initiative, a group of seven
>> Northeastern states, is moving
>> ahead with a proposed system that would set a
>> ceiling on greenhouse gas
>> emissions, issue allowances to companies, and allow
>> firms to trade those
>> allowances to comply with regulations.
>> California is drawing up its program. Other states
>> are also contemplating
>> limits. Even the city of Boulder, Colo., has adopted
>> its own plan -- a
>> carbon tax based on electricity use.
>> "We cannot deal with 50 different policies," said
>> Shell's Hofmeister. "We
>> need a national approach to greenhouse gases."
>> Next week, the Supreme Court will hear arguments on
>> whether the federal
>> government is obligated to regulate carbon dioxide
>> as a pollutant; its
>> decision could force the government to come up with
>> Though many energy firms had already voiced support
>> in recent months for
>> federal regulations limiting greenhouse gas
>> emissions, the coming changeover
>> in Congress has intensified the discussions.
>> "There have been many more folks wanting to engage
>> on the detailed
>> architecture of climate-change legislation," said
>> Jason S. Grumet, executive
>> director of the bipartisan National Commission on
>> Energy Policy. "The tenor,
>> tone and the detail of discussions has changed in
>> the last couple of months.
>> Nobody's going to want to be the last company to
>> come before the Congress
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